Industry News

Internet Radio Still Needs Saving

It’s still going on, and I’m getting more optimistic it will end well for the Internet radio peeps.  Even so, I’m republishing this from the Radio and Internet Newsletter because it deserves attention:

With the Internet Radio Equality Act (H.R. 2060) introduced to Congress and gathering cosponsors, the time to mobilize all webcasters and listeners is now. [See yesterday’s coverage in RAIN here.]

The introduction of the bill gives supporters of the SaveNetRadio.org campaign a clear and direct mission: call your Representatives in Congress today and ask them to cosponsor the bill to keep Internet radio from being wiped out by the CRB rates.

Below is a list of “talking points” provided by SaveNetRadio.org for callers to drive home specific messages to staffers and aides in the office of their Representatives. The same list can be found on the SaveNetRadio.org site after entering your ZIP code, which will then provide you with your Representative’s contact information:

  1. I am a constituent and I’m calling to ask Congressman/woman ________ to save Internet radio by co-sponsoring H.R. 2060, the Internet Radio Equality Act.
  2. The Copyright Royalty Board’s decision to increase royalty rates for webcasters is going to turn off my Internet radio and I do NOT want that to happen. Please tell Congressman/woman ­­­________ to co-sponsor H.R. 2060, the Internet Radio Equality Act.
  3. I believe that artists should be fairly compensated for the music they make, but putting my webcasters out of business will only hurt artists more. They depend on Internet radio to get their music out to fans and build new audiences. When the webcasters go off the air, so do artists. Please co-sponsor H.R. 2060, the Internet Radio Equality Act.
  4. Internet radio is one of the only bright spots for independent music and diversity. We NEED Internet radio. Don’t turn it off. Co-sponsor H.R. 2060, the Internet Radio Equality Act.
  5. (If you are an artist) Internet radio enables artists like myself to reach fans throughout the country and enjoy exposure and airplay that we may otherwise have not received. I’m asking you to co-sponsor H.R. 2060, the Internet Radio Equality Act.

Many supporters have written into RAIN and the SaveNetRadio.org campaign with copies of the correspondence they’ve received from members of Action Alert!Congress in response, which vary in tone from concerned and supportive to uninformed and off-topic.

Responses that fall into the latter category have left some listeners upset who feel that their Representative simply does not care about this issue. Now that H.R. 2060 has been introduced, we strongly urge supporters to contact their Representatives’ office again with a phone call to reiterate the importance of this bill to you, their constituent.

When calling, remember to be polite but firm. Less than supportive responses from mr smith goes to washingtonCongressional offices on this topic are usually the result of staffers and aides not fully understanding the issue; your phone calls could help turn an uninformed member of Congress into a champion of the bill!

Also, with a Bill making its way through the House, a webcaster “Hill walk” in Washington D.C. next Tuesday, and a “Day of Silence” planned for Tuesday, May 8, now is the perfect time to contact your own local media. An articulate and passionate Op-Ed in local papers would be a great asset for our campaign, and would be valuable in helping our message reach an even larger audience.

A copy of the bill in .pdf form, is available here.

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